Do it yourself!

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

How to Vent Your Attic

If you have an older home, you might just find that your attic is in need of better ventilation.  As moisture builds up inside your home, it travels upward and into the structure itself.  While there are building codes that mandate proper attic ventilation during winter, when heating systems release exhaust into the air, summertime moisture accumulation often requires much greater ventilation in order to prevent mold and mildew.  If your attic is in need of better ventilation, this article will help teach you how to install new vents yourself.

When preparing to install a new vent, there are some precautions to keep in mind.  First, ensure that you are working far from antennas and power lines.  Wear loose fitting clothing and ensure that you have rubber soled shoes that provide excellent support.  Take the time to ensure that children and pets are not below your work are and keep your ladder angled safely to prevent falls.  Ensure that your shingles are not loose and that the roof is secure.  Once this has been done, you are ready to get started.

The steps required to install a vent will depend on the vent type.  For intake vents, you will want to mark where you want to install the vent and cut the hole with a circular saw.  When the hole is made, secure the vent into place.  Make sure that your interior blanket insulation leaves a one inch space in order to prevent blocking the vents.  If you use loose insulation, you will want to make certain that the air space is kept clear around the vent in order to ensure that it works properly.

If you are installing a gable vent, you will want to cut the siding and sheathing in the area away with a circular saw, taking care not to cut the studs too deeply.  When the rim of the vent has been caulked, you will want to place it over the newly cut hole.  Secure the vent into place with screws.

For turbine vents, you will want to lay out a space that is between two rafters.  After cutting away the shingles, you will want to use a saber saw to cut a hole in the roof to fit the vent’s throat.  Place roof cement inside the base of the vent and fit it over the hole.  When the top of the flashing is placed above and below the hole, the base should be nailed in place with roofing nail and cement should be used to cover the nail heads.  The turbine should then be put onto the base and put into place with sheet metal screws.

Installing vents can be remarkably easy for the average do it yourself handyman and can help to keep your home free of mildew and moisture.  Installing proper ventilation can prevent many problems and can help ensure that your home is not at risk for the buildup of carbon monoxide.  With the right tools and a bit of patience, you can improve your home’s ventilation is a very short amount of time.


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